Bedroom cannabis farmer spared prison

Crime news
Crime news

A WIGAN man caught growing cannabis in two bedrooms in his home has walked free from court.

A judge told Adrian Braid that it was a serious matter which warranted a jail sentence but he said he was suspending it as he has been out of trouble since 1990 and had mental health problems.

Braid, who has tattoos covering his head, neck and on his face, had at an earlier hearing admitted growing cannabis for his own use and to share with others.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that on November 8 last year members of the public complained to a PCSO about the smell of cannabis coming from 48-year-old Braid’s ground floor flat in Broadway, Hindley.

The officer also smelt the drug and consequently police officers arrived at the premises and in the two bedrooms found two tents containing a total of 26 cannabis plants five foot tall, said Harry Pepper, prosecuting.

They also found plant food, lights and ventilation, two small wraps of heroin, scales and a wallet containing £457 cash.

“They were female flowering plants but the yield would only have been half the normal amount because they had grown too tall which had compromised their development,” said Mr Pepper.

The street value of the yield was estimated as up to £3,000 and the heroin was worth a total of about £5, he added.

When interviewed Braid said that the cash was savings from his benefits and a friend from Birmingham had set up the cannabis operation for him three months earlier to self-medicate for his schizophrenia.

He said that he was minding the heroin for someone else.

Braid, now of Rydale Place, Abram, pleaded guilty to cultivating cannabis and possessing heroin.

The court heard that he has previous convictions but none for drugs.

Mark Ferguson, defending, said that Braid is under the mental health team in Wigan. He lived alone but saw his ex-wife and two daughters on a daily basis and is on a lot of medication because of his medical problems.

Judge David Aubrey QC sentenced him to 12 months imprisonment suspended for two years and placed him under supervision for 18 months.